Author(s): B. Southon, G. Riley, P. Matatiele, B. Kgarebe

Source: Results in Chemistry 2 (2020) 100084

Abstract: Acetone, methyl ethyl ketone (MEK), and methyl isobutyl ketone (MIBK) are ketones most widely used in industry and whose analysis is often used for the determination of occupational exposure. Current literature represents expensive and timeous methods to detect these three ketones simultaneously. This research aims to present a simple, rapid, current, inexpensive, and validated method, for routine analysis and simultaneous detection of acetone, MEK, and MIBK in urine, using headspace gas chromatography with aflame ionization detector (HS GC‐FID), with no prior sample treatment. A general “dilute and shoot” method was used and validated for the following: selectivity, linearity, accuracy and precision, matrix effects, reproducibility, repeatability, ruggedness, carryover, and uncertainty of measurement. The calibration standards showed linearity for all compounds in the working analytical range of 0.80 mg/L to 100 mg/L and correlation coefficient values of > 0.99. The method was selective and produced an LOD of 0.01 mg/L and LOQ of 0.03 mg/L. This method passed all method validation parameters. Each run was completed in less than five minutes. In conclusion, this method is fast, reliable, and requires no sample pre‐treatment. The combined uncertainty of measurement was less than 15% for all three ketones and should be taken into consideration when reporting results. The method was therefore deemed fit for routine analysis for the simultaneous detection of acetone, MEK, and MIBK in urine.

Keywords: Acetone; MEK; MIBK; Headspace Gas Chromatography; Method Validation; Occupational Exposure